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SpaceX Launch Attempt Sets Up Rocket Double Header At Cape

Falcon 9 and AMOS-17 are vertical on Pad 40 in Florida. Photo: SpaceX
Falcon 9 and AMOS-17 are vertical on Pad 40 in Florida. Photo: SpaceX

SpaceX is set to launch a commercial communications satellite from Cape Canaveral Tuesday night. It’s the start of a busy launch week on Florida’s Space Coast.

A Falcon 9 rocket is poised to launch the Amos-17 satellite for commercial operator Spacecom. Once in orbit, the satellite will provide commercial communication services  like television and internet for sub Saharan Africa.

Because of the satellite’s weight, the Falcon 9 will use all of its fuel to lift the satellite into orbit, and will not attempt to land and recover the booster.

The launch attempt comes after a slight delay. Last week, SpaceX discovered an issue with one of the rocket’s valves.

It marks the start of a busy week at the Cape. ULA is scheduled to launch an Atlas V rocket carrying a military communications satellite Thursday.

The SpaceX launch window opens at 7:23 p.m. Tuesday and remains open until 8:21. The Air Force’s 45th Space Wing forecasts about a 40 percent chance of favorable weather for launch.

Brendan Byrne is Central Florida Public Media's Assistant News Director, managing the day-to-day operations of the newsroom, editing daily news stories, and managing the organization's internship program. Byrne also hosts Central Florida Public Media's weekly radio show and podcast "Are We There Yet?" which explores human space exploration, and the weekly news roundup podcast "The Wrap."